Nokia and Sonera announced a successful NB-IoT trial in Finland, and claimed a world first after connecting a roaming device over a commercial network using the technology.

The trial, run over Sonera’s 4G network, was completed in the Finnish capital Helsinki, with Nokia implementing NB-IoT technology to communicate information on temperature, humidity and air pressure.

The companies also said they were able to connect a roaming device using NB-IoT, the world’s first demonstration to show how NB-IoT technology “will allow companies to track their mobile assets”.

For example, the test shows how large maintenance firms such as electricians or plumbers can monitor fleets of vehicles, or healthcare providers can track the status of patients outside of a hospital.

NB-IoT, an official 3GPP-based standardised technology for low power wide area networks, designed to connect billions of devices, continues to gain traction, with wide commercialisation of the technology expected next year.

Last month, Vodafone said it is lining up four debuts of NB-IoT, in Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain, during Q1 next year. T-Mobile is also planning European deployments.

Nokia said the trial with Sonera used 800MHz to maximise coverage and connect to devices in harder to reach locations, with speeds reaching up to 200Kb/s.

Earlier this week, Singapore’s M1 also conducted a trial with Nokia, and said it plans to deploy its nationwide NB-IoT network by mid-2017.